Economy India
Special Story

Economic Nationalism  vs. Crony Capitalism

MANOHAR MANOJ

One could easily assess an over-enthusiastic scenario prevailing out of the well-balanced budget presented by Finance minister Nirmala Sitarman owing to the comfortable macroeconomic indicators of the country’s economy. However, on the contrary, there was a pensive atmosphere in the other quarter of the Modi government;  here people were worried about the release of the US-based research group Hinderberg report on Gautam Adani led Adani group which literally shattered the FPO of 20 thousand crores, which eventually brought down the business ranking of Adani group drastically. Around one dozen listed companies of the Adani group including the newly acquired ND tv witnessed a continuous sharp falling note in the stock market. It was unprecedentedly bad news for the third-richest company in the world, and a shocking event for the incumbent political group of the country as well. However, this event brought a huge smile to the face of the Modi opposers and they immediately ascended on a rocking note. The Adani group thereafter hurriedly came up with a full-page ad in several newspapers with all clarifications against the allegations put on by the Hindenburg report and they made their detailed self-statement on this episode. It was told by the company that by this report foreign forces have made a well-calculated attack on the economic nationalism and economic sovereignty of India. Hindenburg made a counterattack on the statement made by Adani and said, ” by quoting the word ‘economic nationalism’ you are just trying to cover up your massive irregularities and cronyism and thus trying to wrap up your misdeeds with the tricolor flag of your country.In India, the common perception is that this company has been hugely supported and favored by the Modi govt. This Gujarat-based business group has been always perceived as the topmost crony capitalist, which has also fully supported the burgeoning political career of Narendra Modi through finance and logistics. Besides, the Adani group is also regarded as one of the fundamental curators of the Gujarat model of development pitch. However, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitaraman clarified later that whatever the projects Adani group has gotten, were done on the basis of merit and formalized processes; whether it pertains to the port, airport, and other ventures. The fact is that the rise of many business tycoons during the past period in the country has been very much attributed to favoring ruling regimes whether at the state or at the center. Rahul Gandhi’s this allegation that how can a company which was not even on a 600 company list becomes no.2 in the world within 8 years. The allegation seems to be valid, but it is also true, this same story got visible in the case of the Reliance group also, whose story of the uprising was not dissimilar to Adani’s. Both are fine examples of crony capitalism which can’t be altered through economic nationalism. It’s fundamentally crony capitalism that emerges because of a lack of corporate governance in the economic system and also because of the flourishing cult of political patronage in the political system. But at the same time in India, business houses are always beholden in a suspicious manner, and an entrepreneur has to always follow the political track.

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